Porcelain veneers are thin layers of porcelain that are adhered to the front of teeth to cosmetically adjust the appearance, making them whiter or straighter. Veneers made from porcelain are durable and stain resistant. If the glaze is worn off, the veneer may become stained. Veneers may also become stained around the sides of the veneers from the compound material as it ages. Veneers will not whiten with bleach like a natural tooth does, but you may try to whiten the teeth below the veneer, or contact a cosmetic dentist.
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Things you need
- Teeth whitening system
- Gentle polishing toothpaste
- Cosmetic dentist
Determine the type of porcelain veneers that you have. If you have light, translucent veneers, you can attempt to bleach the back of the veneered teeth, according to Dr. David A. Hall of My New Smile. By bleaching the back of the teeth, the natural tooth will whiten, which is reflected in the translucent veneer. Follow the instructions in the tooth whitening system, and consult your dentist before trying at home whitening.
Brush your teeth using a gentle toothpaste that is designed to remove the composite that can stain veneers. Hall suggests using a gentle polishing toothpaste if you are experiencing slight staining around the edges of the veneers. Replace your normal toothpaste with a polishing formula until the stains are removed. The toothpaste will remove the composite build-up around the veneers for a whiter looking tooth. Ask your dentist for a toothpaste recommendation.
Visit a cosmetic dentist if your veneers appear stained. The porcelain glaze may have worn off of the veneers, and the dentist may be able to professionally clean and polish the veneers so that they appear whiter. If the veneers are unable to be fixed, you may need to replace them.
Tips and warnings
- Before obtaining veneers, bleach your teeth using an at-home kit or professionally at a dentist's office. If your teeth are white before applying veneers, the veneers selected will be white to match your teeth.
- Consult with your dentist to determine the best way to whiten your veneered or natural teeth.
- Using whitening bleaches may result in discomfort, gum irritation and pain.
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